viernes, 24 de septiembre de 2010

Logbook fourth and Fifth Stage of the Shark Proyect

Catalina Island Logbook
Objective: To photograph blue shark and Mako shark as part of the “Shark Project”
Date: September 7 to the 12th.

As a part from the “Shark Project” this past September 7, I left my Mexico’s home in order to get to Catalina Island, California. With the sole objective of getting in the water without a cage and photograph the Blue shark and the Mako shark.

Catalina Island is of volcanic origins and it is located in front of Los Angeles, California. Surrounded by the Pacific Ocean’s cold waters; this makes it a great place to find this kind of shark and some others.
The expedition consisted in four days in which we got out to the open sea daily in search of sharks.

The first day, I was so excited and wanting to get into the water to photograph sharks as fast as possible, but hours went by and nothing, it was a very long boring day, having to pull bait drift unsuccessfully. In days like this it comes to my mind the harm we are making to our oceans, places like this one, used to be a guarantee of founding these kind of species , sharks are been haunted by humans to the point that we cannot even watch them. In addition to uncontrolled fishing has allowed other species such as the Humbolt squid to expand their territory and gaining a higher post in the food chain.

The second day we were lucky, by morning we found a huge and misshaped moon fish, we were in the water with it for more than 20 minutes and we got several pictures of this fish. In the afternoon, we found five young blue sharks; we spent with them more than two hours, plenty of time to get good photos. However, I was missing the fastest fish in the ocean, the Mako Shark.

The third day I was happy with the material gotten the last day, I was awaken in a great mood and eager to find the Mako. First thing in that morning, two blue sharks that did not want to stay and interact with us, because while we were gearing up, they disappear without a trace.  Around four o´clock when everything seemed to be an unsuccessful day, an electric blue silhouette appeared, and without thinking twice, I was with my visor, flippers, snorkel, and got into the water. Through my mask, I realized I was the only one in the water, I turned and I was face to face with his majesty, the Mako shark. There are no words to describe its beauty and how electrifying the encounter was. At all times, I had my camera between him and myself, with his sharp teeth started to surround me as if he wanted to take the camera out of his way. He begun to dive in order to attack from below, I reacted to this action by placing my camera between us, this was the only way to protect myself from harm. When he saw that I wasn´t giving up that easy, he changed his mind and went straight to the bait, leaving me alone. This is by far, one of the best moments I had in the water with the sharks.
The fourth day, the weather wasn´t so good and the wind did not allow us to go to the open sea, even though we stayed by the coast of the island, here I managed to have a picture of a nice horned shark.

In general the expedition was a success, achieving with it 50% of my project, next year I am looking to go to Rhode Island, to see the adult blue shark.

In this trip: Eli Martinez, Editor to Shark Diver Magazine, Amanda Cotton, Vince Canabal, Debbie, Canabal and Hans Wegener, They like me are lovers of diving with sharks.

I have a couple of expeditions pending in what remains of the year, in these expeditions I am hoping to photograph Bull sharks and Tiger sharks at Cabo Plumo. Then we will be back at Guadalupe Island to learn more about the Great White.

Thank you for all your support and I hope to have more news soon.

Gerardo del Villar

More about shark proyect:

Stage one:

Stage two:

Stage three: 

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